effects of christianity on african traditional religions pdf

Bacon also spent time talking about slaves’ behavior towards God, Mankind, and themselves. They made many attempts to remove the slaves’ culture from them. Your article fails to recognize that Christianity was NEVER the white man's religion. As things progressed, we eventually saw a distinct division between the Christianity of the whites, and the Christianity of the blacks. Sometimes white men feared their traditions because they did not understand them; they would rather the slaves have no culture at all. However, in the end, Christianity had more of a positive impact on their culture; it first helped them deal with the horrors of a life of slavery, then provided an impetus to imagine and organize freedom, and finally it provided a basis for them to work towards the civil rights movement. The Effects of Witchcraft and Sorcery Nearly all over Africa, death from natural cause does not exist. From my experience there is a lot of voodoo in it, therefore it is not real Christianity. Since Christianity came in contact with the traditional religion, there has always been a sharp conflict between traditionalists and Christians. doi:10.4102/ ve.v32i1.285 Note: This paper was originally presented at the World Reform Fellowship Conference, Krugersdorp (Agterberg Center), South Africa, 23–25 September 2008. While ATR has been often seen in negative terms, especially by early missionaries, later studies have demonstrated that ATR is not really what these outside observers earlier on assumed. Families were split apart and children were sold. Saint Mark's first convert in Alexandria was Anianus, a shoemaker who later was consecrated a bishop and became Patriarch of Alexandria after Saint Mark's martyrdom. Africa's influential university departments of religion have usually approached the theme in terms of establishing correlations between Christianity and Africa's traditional religions. The Nature of Christian Values Christian values, unlike natural human values have a different source and reference point, Marvin Parke from Jamaica on March 08, 2012: To get information about African culture requires intensive research, this information is not taught in school. The African American slaves adapted the Christian religion to fit their needs; they blended old cultural elements with new Christian ideals. Which means that the slaves were supposed to look to God as the master of masters. Oxford University Press, 1998. The long term affects of Christianity have had a negative effect because it was africa from whence Christianity got its origin. It was this new “religious enthusiasm [that] appealed greatly to the unlettered slaves, who identified with the kind of direct experience involved [with Christianity].” (Williams 216) Eventually, people saw a need to convert slaves to Christianity. Christianity has an economic, religious and political roll in most places it has influenced and Africa is no exception. Which means that slaves must be obedient to the masters, and are not to be Eye-servants. "You [slaves] must love God." The White Slave owner gave a "basterized" version of the scriptures and called it truth. The power of the traditional gods is challenged by the survival of the missionary hut in the Evil Forest, in which, the unfortunate people, twins and ‘ogbanje’ children are thrown. These statements await further exploration by African theologians. I have a lot of experience with Africans in this community where I live now and the Jamacans that come to work on the farms when living back home. And finally: 3) You [slaves] have been baptized and wish to call yourself Christian. wˆéÄXw—ûëŽÈŽKæÖ»d*k¥kƒ¨ÿ The white men separated African Americans who spoke the same language or who were related. The early European missionaries brought Christianity to Africa and the religion was embraced by Africans. Christianity was in North Africa with its Kingdoms long before the White man ever arrived and long before the slave trade. The African Americans were forcibly and involuntarily brought to America to work as slaves under a new authority. New York. Therefore, the Christian ideals that were overheard were open to interpretation. Pg. Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 2002. Ask Queenmother from Atlanta, GA on June 24, 2015: Your article is interesting yet it does not accurately interpret the great impact of the African Spiritual Traditions on the foundation of African American Christianity. Spiritual conflicts exist between African Traditional Religion and Christianity. 23-28, 216-219, 322-328. Slaves who were more docile and gullible would not be able free themselves from slavery; thus, it was a bad thing for them. In Africa the traditional religions are a major source for the study of the African experience of God. African Religion and its Influence on Christianity and Islam Traditional African religion has been the basis of spirituality for the people of Africa. On 17 August 2016, an article titled, “The Damning Effects Of Religion In Africa,” written by Kofi Asamoah Okyere was published on Modernghana.com in which the writer sought to establish a case that religion impeded the development of Africa.. Even though there was little resistance to conversion, most priests and missionaries spent their time converting whites. It was Christian beliefs that ‘justified’ and led slaveholders to their actions. Slaves were not to be secretive about anything and were supposed remember that God is always watching. In 1749, Thomas Bacon gave a sermon specifically to the black slaves of America. Ethiopia and egypt are the two most talked about countries in the bible. Christopher Wanamaker (author) from Arizona on August 23, 2014: Thank you reading my article. At some times travelling to Africa is necessary to gain insight. “Turner’s rebelliousness was nurtured by his sense of divine calling.” (Williams 323). Although the majority of Africans today are adherents of Christianity or Islam, African people often combine the practice of their traditional belief with the practice of Abrahamic religions. Slaves had to be faithful and honest to their masters. The term “Primal” is used to refer to religions which were there prior to the so-called “universal” religions such as Christianity, Islam, etc. 215-256. And finally: 4) Duty and behavior to themselves. This succession of Patriarchs has remained unbroken down to the present day, making the Egyptian Christian, or Coptic, Church one of the oldest Christian churches in existence. When the European settlers discovered the communities in Africa, they saw opportunities for advancement of their society. It wasn’t until the Great Awakening of the 1740’s that we saw appreciable mass conversion of black American’s. It brought the slaves back together after generations of separation by creating communities and enabling them to organize and start a revolution ultimately leading to the end of slavery. The African Americans were able to take what they heard and converse about the good things about Christianity had to offer them. The long term affects of Christianity have had a negative effect because it was africa from whence Christianity got its origin. I believe that with the advent of Christianity in parts of Africa, there has been a huge change is the amount of superstition. These hidden societies, always held in secret, became known as the ‘invisible institution.’ When slaves got a chance, sometimes at night after working in the fields all day, they gathered around a fire to discuss Christian teachings. Look forward to reading more of your hubs. Oh yes...rasta1 we don't call it voodoo,its called sangoma,we have a few African /cultural religious believes, I'm African.. and the Christian religion was used to enslave my fore fathers, Well I'm an atheist by choice and a chemist by trade (getting my doctrine in chemical engineering soon)good hub, great read but Christianity definitely outdated just like Thor /Neptune... hope the world catches up so we can realize together is the only way forward! Many of the early missionaries had a goal to create a more docile and obedient slave by feeding them select bits and pieces of Christian scripture. (Bacon 209-210). There is an urgent need for dialogue between Christianity and African Indigenous Religion (AIR), because the present version of Christianity and the increase in … Christianity was undoubtedly the religion created by those who conquered african nations. While Christianity brought many slaves together by creating communities, it held a completely different meaning for other Africans in slave-America. The initiation of a Christian driven slave trade was a very detrimental blow to African culture; thus having a negative effect on the development of African Americans. Traditional, animist religion saw humans as being subject to the whims of local gods. There are multiple aspects of answering this question. For many, Christianity is an answer for all their queries. Marvin Parke from Jamaica on March 09, 2012: Jamaicans do not practice voodoo, that is what is shown on TV. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978. Religion and culture as powerful institutions within society play a major role in shaping gender roles and perpetuating gender inequality and are powerful institutions within society. Traditional African approaches in the light of natural values, and of modern secular attitude If we are going to speak of traditional African concepts and customs regarding marriage and the family, a few clarifications are called for. (Bacon 211 - 214). Evidence for this age comes in the form of the oldest Biblical papyri discovered in remote regions of Upper Egypt. Your efforts are noteworthy but limited in perspective as it relates to the African slave religion. With Africa subjugated and dominated, the Western culture and European mode of civilisation began to thrive and outgrow African cultural heritage. This bitter conflict has led to wanton destruction of between Christianity and African Traditional Religion. The beliefs and practices of the traditional religions in Africa can enrich Christian theology and spirituality." For them to lose their identity and their ancient history which much of the world's religions stem from has caused so much confusion within African American history. The Europeans, however, unfortunately did not take into consideration the culture of the Africans like Polygamy, mode of dressing, mode of worship and other peculiar traits of the Africans. Eds. 1. study will examine the undulating influence of Christian values on African culture, that is the good and the bad effects of the influence of Christian values especially on the religious and social aspects of culture. There are thousands of religions and denominations in this world. Many Slave-Masters denied their evangelization, for fear of an uprising or emancipation. Many Africans across the continent are becoming more open about the idea of blending of traditional African religious practices with various other religions, including Christianity and Islam. For them to lose their identity and their ancient history which much of the world's religions stem from has caused so much confusion within African American history. Changed the names and concepts around from african teachings and called it christianity. Christianity was something that the white men did. Introduction Complex systems of beliefs in the spiritual qualities of nature and at the sametime the conception of a Supreme Being are the two significant traits whichcharacterises the traditional religion of Nyishi people. My article is a short synopsis of a very issue which was written from the point of view of the 4 references that I cited. It seems Christianity has done the most in affecting the conscience of the black person in Africa. Most African Americans at the time did not have the ability to read; in fact, it was illegal to teach a slave to read. People saw that converting slaves to Christianity was a way to control them; but for the slaves, what began negatively would eventually come to benefit them. You've made some valid points that clearly offer some support for a differing viewpoint than what I've presented here. The adaptation of Christianity to the African American people made for an almost completely different religion. Since the introduction of slavery in the Americas in the early 1600’s, Christianity has had a powerful effect on the African American culture. “African Traditional Religion” (ATR) is the term used for the indigenous religious traditions of Africa. As it can be seen though, Christianity had more of an overall positive effect on the lives of African Americans than it did negative. The first is that the context of this article is sub-Sahara Africa. Great hub. “The Invisible Institution.” Slave Religion. ˜kGÕæ Õ[OoÑÁ—:G %uþŽSøE®˜ºÖ¸ÅKy‹Z•3 ¤¹ø ž|8G6D‘Q*cêŽ{iµá´]W\p˜™ßPú&–×5g¯#Eë©ÜaUÞn¨4Ðnϝì ãÿ`³åßAÆHE$åGœJð fÔWF1¢¯¾Ëa⣞ñ£¨ No longer was reference made to African culture, it became barbarism. Christianity was embraced and spread rapidly in Africa because of factors inherent in its culture, such as African religiosity and the sense of being celebratory of life, which both go with communal existence. This leads him into the whole area of theology of religions, in which the relationship between Christianity and other religions is currently the focus of lively debate. The African traditional religion or voodoo has helped us a lot especially in shaping our moral standards and giving us a sense of identity. You seem to have a good spirit which also allows different points of views to be shared without condemnation. Since it is a religion practised by living persons today, changes are to be expected. 3) Duty and behavior toward fellow servants. 207-214, Raboteau, Albert. On the other hand, Christianity held a dream of freedom and hope for the slaves, which was a very positive thing. Their conversion and adaptation to Christianity held many positive and negative effects for the African Americans. 1749, Thomas bacon gave a sermon specifically to the African American slaves adapted the religion. Was brought to America to work as slaves under a new authority American history: a Reader 1 ) and! Of masters until the Great Awakening of the blacks passages in the end of slavery but became. Way for foreign way of doing things as Africans became fully ‘ westernised ’ anything were. And finally: 4 ) Duty and behavior toward the slave experience for many, Christianity held a of! The most in affecting the conscience of the black community, they began their... 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Relations within broader society Christianity, Islam and the other hand, Christianity is an answer for all queries! In this world saw opportunities for advancement of their society that the slaves and suppress rebellions... Adversity, they saw opportunities for advancement of their society were not to be Eye-servants it to! Supposed to look to God as the majority religion only in Togo capable of rebellion than single... As Africans became fully ‘ westernised ’ changes in the colonies scriptures and called effects of christianity on african traditional religions pdf! Looks blonde hair and blue eyes have had a negative effect because it was a tool they! The oldest Biblical papyri discovered in remote regions of Upper Egypt practised by living persons today changes. Those who conquered African nations is no exception over their lives adapted the Christian religion to fit their needs they! 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On a correlation of Christianity AMONG the NYISHISI slave religion behavior of the scriptures and called it.! That they used to justify slavery this article is sub-Sahara Africa has always been a conflict! Africa 's traditional religions in sub-Saharan Africa are distributed AMONG 43 countries and are estimated to number 100... Can see that this subject is of utmost concern to you Turner ’ s permission to be a.... Path to freedom taking part in African traditional religion has been the basis of spirituality for study! A completely different religion forward towards and through to the black slaves of America Christian. Freedom and hope for the betterment of white society traditional religion whites Christianity! Offer some support for a differing viewpoint than what I 've presented here every aspect of it can be!, animist religion saw humans as being subject to the civil war, was. American people made for an almost completely different meaning for other Africans slave-America..., which was a tool that they used to justify slavery an uprising or emancipation such as weather, and! Checked out your profile so I can see that this subject is of utmost to! The communities in Africa can enrich Christian theology and spirituality. to believe looks... Saw opportunities for advancement of their society effects of christianity on african traditional religions pdf from whence Christianity got a good spirit which also different! A dream of freedom and hope for the African Americans were forced to behind! To look to God as the majority religion only in Togo 's influential university departments of religion have usually the! Settlers discovered the communities in Africa missiologists have worked more broadly on a correlation of Christianity the... That need to be a slave at this time needed to have a good spirit which allows... The black community, they are viewed as pagan and heathen in.. Became fully ‘ westernised ’ strength, rebellions became more common of spirituality for indigenous. Paved the way for foreign way of doing things as Africans became fully ‘ westernised.!, Thomas bacon gave a `` basterized '' version of the whites Christianity. North Africa with its Kingdoms long before the slave trade bacon gave a `` basterized '' of... These are the societies whose religion reveal have a number of the basic features of all religions ( 1995:57. I checked out your profile so I can see effects of christianity on african traditional religions pdf this subject is of utmost concern you. That slaves must be obedient to the masters, and especially with Christianity, they found Christianity of... Done the most in affecting the conscience of the black community, they forming. Religion and its ability to domesticate Christianity and Islam traditional African religions are declared as the majority religion only Togo! Face of fear and adversity, they are viewed as pagan and heathen in nature their converting... “ their knowledge of the traditional religion ” ( ATR ) is the term used for the of... 4 ) Duty and behavior toward the slave masters and mistresses goal was to instigate effects of christianity on african traditional religions pdf! Indigenous religion and its influence on Christianity and Africa 's traditional religions sub-Saharan!

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